Early St. Patrick’s Day!

Happy Saturday, everyone! St. Patrick’s Day is not actually until Monday, of course, but I’m off to the St. Patrick’s Day Ball tonight (with my black and white dress, plus a green chiffon shawl and a big fake emerald ring–thanks for the accessories advice last week!). Plus I got an early St. P’s Day present this week. I sold a trilogy to Grand Central Publishing!!!

Now, how does this fit in with the Shamrocks and Slip Jigs theme? The series, tentatively called “The Daughters of Ireland,” is set in Ireland and London around the events of the 1798 Rebellion. I’m very excited to get to tackle a book set in Ireland amid so much drama and upheaval–Ireland is very big in the McCabe Family. It seems like a place just meant for romance and passion.

Book One, called Countess of Scandal (but which will probably be something different later) comes out sometime in 2010. It features the first of the three Blacknall sisters, Elizabeth (Eliza). She is a young, rich widowed countess, the daughter of a wealthy Anglo-Irish family. But she has a secret–she writes seditious pamphlets for the United Irishmen, and hides fugitives in the cellars of her vast Dublin townhouse. She’s devoted to Irish freedom, but a serious problem pops up in the person of her childhood sweetheart, Will Denton, the son of her family’s equally wealthy neighbors. He left her when she was young to join the Army and go off to the West Indies, breaking her heart. Now he’s back–and he’s Major William Denton, sent to Ireland to quell the growing unrest. He knows Eliza is up to something dangerous, and is just as determined to stop her as she is to fulfill her mission. If they can keep from falling hopelessly in love all over again.

I am very excited about this series! Of course, now I have to actually get to work and write them…

And, in the spirit of All Things Irish, here are a few facts I found about Guinness (to go with your corned beef and cabbage):
–Arthur Guinness started brewing the famous stout in Dublin in 1759, having purchased a dormant brewery with 100 pounds from his godfather’s will. He signed a 9000 year lease on that brewery, with an annual rent of 45 pounds (still in effect, I would think)
–10 million glasses of Guinness are drunk every day around the world
–A pint of Guinness Draught has fewer calories than a pint of 2% milk or a pint of orange juice
–The Guiness Storehouse in Dublin is one of their most-visited tourist attractions, with over 750,000 visitors every year

So, Cheers to everyone this St. Patrick’s Day! I’m so happy to share my news with all the Riskies! What are your plans for the holiday?

About Amanda McCabe/Laurel McKee

Writer (as Amanda McCabe, Laurel McKee, Amanda Carmack), history geek, yoga enthusiast, pet owner!
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Susan Wilbanks
14 years ago

Congratulations on your sale, Amanda! The 1798 rebellion is a corner of history that deserves more fictional attention, IMHO, and I’m looking forward to your take on it!

No real St. Patrick’s Day plans here. I need to figure out if I have any green work clothes–my business casual wardrobe is very heavy on the black, gray, and dark brown.

14 years ago

Congrats, Amanda! That is terrific news and that sounds like a great story!

No big St. Pat’s day plans–might have to go get some corned beef and cabbage though–mmm!

Diane Gaston
14 years ago

A pint of Guinness Draught has fewer calories than a pint of 2% milk or a pint of orange juice

Yay! A diet drink I can truly embrace.

SUPER congratulations, Amanda! The trilogy sounds terrific and I’m delighted Grand Central snapped it up. But we have to wait until 2010?

I am wearing green today but purely by accident. By Monday, these clothes will be in the wash and I’ll be desperate to find some green.

Have fun tonight!

Janet Mullany
14 years ago

Congrats, Amanda (again).

I’m wearing green too because it was the only clean thing I could find (on the floor). I hate St. Patrick’s Day, tho–all that fake Irish schtick. Back in the days when I was a radio announcer I annoyed several Irish people by playing music by the great Irish composer Antoni O’Vivaldi on the day, having exhausted the O’Carolan and Harty repertoire.

14 years ago

Hi Amanda,
Congrats on the book deal. We’re not Irish, but I think my dad will be making corned beef, potatoes and cabbage. It’s going to be a tasty meal, we don’t eat this often.

14 years ago

I’ll be lifting up a pint to ya, Amanda – though it won’t be Guiness. Will a Harp’s do?

Congrats on the sale! I adore all things Celtic, having married my own Irish rogue, and can’t wait for this newest series.

I can’t wait to see how you weave this tale of Ireland.

Sante’ from Santa
(I’ve always wanted to do that)

14 years ago

Darn it!


Slainte’ from Santa

Ah, well. Off to have me pint!

Cara King
14 years ago

CONGRATULATIONS, AMANDA!!!!!!!!!! Definitely looking forward to 2010!

BTW, I must confess I really hate Guinness. (Does that mean my Irish ancestors are turning in their graves?)


Amanda McCabe
14 years ago

“having married my own Irish rogue,”

So, Santa, where can I get one of those, too? πŸ™‚

Thanks to everyone for the congrats! It will be 2010 because 1) that’s when they have slots open and 2) I have to write them first! Plus 2 books and a novella (with Diane and Deb). But it’s going to be FIERCE (ooh, sorry, Project Runway flashback…)

Keira Soleore
14 years ago

Huge props to Ammanda for the sale!!!! With last year’s Venetian book, that’s nine books in the pipeline in less than a year. YES!

Can I interest you in medieval Ireland? Tons of stories there. I’ll loan you research books, too.

No St. Paddy’s Day plans. But the real tragedy is: No ale I can stick a spoon in, or any pale ones either.

Diane, I thought your drink of choice was brandy. Perhaps, you can offer brandy and Guiness draught at your signings. Wonder if the French have an order in which those two drinks need to be consumed?!

What kind of daft signed away a nine astound thousand years on a brewery, even if it was a snoozer?

Raising a bottle of Starbucks Water to that most Irish of composers Vivaldi. πŸ™‚

Diane Gaston
14 years ago

Keira, my heroes drink brandy and I’ve been known to imbibe a bit of brandy myself–purely for research purposes. I always drink Guinness in pubs. Mostly because I haven’t a clue what else to order and I like the taste of Guinness.
And it is a diet drink, Amanda says.

My cousin Margie and her husband Tom drink Jameson whiskey (with an “e” because it is Irish) and that is a mighty fine whiskey. Unlike Guinness, Jameson has been around since 1780, so maybe our characters enjoyed it as well.

14 years ago

Alas, all my rouges brothers are taken but I’ll keep my eye out for you. Will it be hair as black as coal and eyes as blue as the fierce Irish Sea? There is that singer from Celtic Thunder. The corner of his mouth does lift into a sardonic grin when he sings….

And no Cara, your relatives won’t be turning in their graves if you lift up a pint of Harps instead or a tumbler of Jameson whiskey neat.

Deb Marlowe
14 years ago

Yay! I’m so excited for you, Amanda, but completely bummed that we have to wait so long!

We never do St. Patty’s anymore, since my son’s birthday is that day. He’s not big on Guiness, πŸ™‚ and it doesn’t go well with birthday cake. But I always order one at our local Irish pub!

Keira Soleore
14 years ago

Yes, Santa, I’ll have one those. The whiskey and the whisky, of course. And neat!!! It drives me bonkers when people order it on the rocks. With cold ice?!?! And none with my ale, too.

Ammanda, is a single malt a diet drink, too? All whiskies, for that matter? I can just see a sozzled bunch of Riskies at National all claiming they’d decided to drink their lunches and dinners, because they were on a diet.

14 years ago

HUGE CONGRATS, AMANDA!!! I am so excited for you. And I cannot wait to read this series. Just the premise of the first one has me hooked.

I have to work St. Patrick’s Day, but I will be wearing my four leaf clover pin on my blue and khaki Wal-Mart uniform. I hate to tell them, but calling it a dress code and then demanding that I wear a navy shirt and khaki slacks MAKES it a uniform!

Definitely some corned beef on the menu at my house Monday.

I am a complete teetotaler which blows people’s minds when I wear my Guinness gear. I have Guinness hats, t-shirts, sleep pants, boxers , sleepshirts and scarves. The dh was a Guinness man, so I always smile when I wear my Guinness stuff.

My brothers and I have matching Hooligans Rugby shirts that we bought a few years ago. No Brain No Pain is written across the bottom. We are big rugby fans and have been since we learned to play from our English neighbors. Rugby is serious business when you are 9 years old!

My mother is FBI (full blooded Indian) but with a maiden name like Jones, there had to be an Irishman in there somewhere!

Amanda McCabe
14 years ago

“music by the great Irish composer Antoni O’Vivaldi”

Don’t forget that old favorite McMozart, too. πŸ™‚

I must go look up the nutritional content of whiskey (or maybe not–do I really want to know???)! I was quite surprised about that little Guinness factoid. I don’t drink much beer at all, but I do enjoy a nice, dark Guinness once in a while (and since the brewery opened in 1759, maybe my Irish characters do, too). I’m pretty sure the drinks I love the most (chocolatinis, Cosmos, lemon drops) are not low in calories whatsoever. πŸ™‚

Elena Greene
14 years ago

Congrats on the sale, Amanda!

For St. Patrick’s Day I’m just going to make steak-and-Guiness pie and put on some Celtic music. No green beer for me. πŸ™‚

Amanda McCabe
14 years ago

“There is that singer from Celtic Thunder. The corner of his mouth does lift into a sardonic grin when he sings.”

I never even heard of this group before, but it’s on PBS tonight for their fundraiser. I see the one you mean, Santa–he would do nicely. :))

Elena, steak and Guinness pie sounds delicious! I prefer my beer non-green, too, definitely.

Elizabeth Kerri Mahon
14 years ago

Congratulations on your sale Amanda! The luck of the Irish is surely with you. I can’t wait to read them, even if I do have to wait until 2010. I’m not wearing green, but I’m wearing a pair of Celtic earrings, I picked up in Dublin a few years ago.

Megan Frampton
14 years ago

YAY Amanda! I am so excited!